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Hey everyone!

Being smart and clever people, you’ve probably noticed that every year we all get together in November and excitedly share our progress and generally have a bunch of fun creating awesome stuff, and helping each other with advice or encouragement, and  talking about game design. Then November ends and this website gets very quite for about the following ten months… just like it has been so far this year! The NagaDemon Facebook page is a little more active than this site, mostly because I’m a member of a number of groups on FB so it is easy to drop a comment or respond to folk that way. I’ve tried to use Google+, but am just not there all that frequently!

Anyway, this annual stretch of quiet is something that weighs on my mind – I would love the site to be useful all year round, not just in November. What would you like to see here? To read about or learn about? Do you feel you can contribute in some way? I will be up front and say whatever happens in the future, it needs to be sustainable and manageable as I run NagaDemon between work commitments and a family of wild children! 🙂 Leave a comment and let me know your thoughts.

While you are leaving that comment, make sure you also tell us where you most often talk about games, game design, and your own endeavours. Give yourself a shout-out!

Thanks,

Nathan Russellfeedback

Ready To Rock 2015

Hi everyone! November is almost here, which means it’s almost Demon Slaying Time – YEEEHA! I hope you have sharpened your pencils, prepped your dice and told your gaming crew you will need them soon to play test your TOTALLY AWESOME GAME!

As always there are a bunch of you that have started preparing and have a solid idea, plenty of notes and a road map that will lead you to success. There are also just as many of you that are just going to do it all by the seat of your pants! Whatever your preferred method, make sure you pace yourself and keep the eye on the prize – getting your game to the table (or screen!) and letting some people enjoy a taste of it.

I apologise that I (and this website) have been so quiet this year. My family has had to deal with a number of unexpected (and sometimes scary) turns this year and while we are on a much more even keel now it has taken its toll on my time and energy. I am here, however, to support everyone in their endeavours this November. I want you all to create amazing, exciting, entertaining, thoughtful, fun games.

I will be as active as I can on social media (Facebook, Twitter and Google+) and hope you will be, too. If social media isn’t your thing, leave a comment below with where you are blogging, commenting and sharing your successes! Share your progress; ask for and give feedback; and encourage everyone involved to keep going and continue to do their best.

Good luck everyone!

Talking about talking about games

November is getting close, boys and girls, and I know a lot of you are already preparing for your quest toward game design greatness – good on you! As you ponder your awesome game ideas, gather your thoughts and/or resources, and generally limber-up ready for November make sure you plan time to talk about your games.

While NaGa DeMon is presented as a “competition” where you compete with yourself to design a game and play it, it has always been my intention that this event was mostly about talking about your processes, your triumphs and tribulations – sharing your successes, your tips and tricks, your advice and generally supporting each other. And I would like to say, right up front, that past participants have done a fabulous job of this.

Each year there are lots of questions along the lines of “what am I allowed to do” and “can I…”. While there is an official criteria of “creating, playing and talking about your game in November”, this year I will be primarily focused on the talking bit.  In 2010 when I began NaGa DeMon I was coming from a place where a group of us were trying to encourage people to get involved in game design, and (in particular) actually completing games in order to share them with the world. That’s why the criteria is so specific regarding creating and playing.

Creating games is still the goal of NaGa DeMon, but this year I  want to go further, I want to say that it doesn’t matter whether you are creating a brand new game, or dragging out “that game” you have been slogging away on for years; it doesn’t matter if you start it on November 1 or November 20 (of 2013 or 2012), and it really doesn’t matter if you finish it. It doesn’t matter whether you are creating a card game or RPG, boardgame, iPhone app, or first-person-shooter. It honestly doesn’t matter whether your game is completely original or based on open source material, or inspired by your favourite film. All of these things are valid ways to start, get involved with and participate in NaGa DeMon. What does matter, though, is whether you genuinely participate by talking about what you are doing, on Facebook or G+, via Twitter, on your blog or over at your favourite forum. You don’t even have to discuss what you are doing with other NaGa DeMon participants (though it would be great if you did) – just talk about it wherever you like to talk about games, whether that is online, in your garage, or at the local game store.

I still encourage everyone to have a red-hot crack at the “official” NaGa DeMon event where you come up with a cool idea and use November to Create the game, Play the game and Talk about the game, and I will still be offering those DeMon Slayer badges for all you winners. But please make time to share your experiences. Some places you might consider talking about your game design adventure include:

The NaGa DeMon Facebook group

@TheNagademon on Twitter (use the hashtag #nagademon)

The NaGa DeMon Google+ group

The forums over at 1km1kt.net

The forums over at TabletopGamer.net

Over at Board Game Geek or RPG Geek

I will soon be unveiling a cool way for you to connect up your discussions and conversations, and to easily find what other people are talking about. Hold on to your hats, because the NaGa DeMon is coming!

November Approaches

It’s that time of year again, when our palms begin to sweat with anticipation and the old brain cogs begin to turn, chewing through ideas and plotting the assault on the NaGa DeMon. Over the next couple of weeks i will put up a couple of posts regarding this year’s National Game Design Month. One will be my general thoughts on “what exactly this is all about” while the other is (hopefully) going to introduce a trial run of something that will make keeping track of everyone’s projects a bit easier.

Check out the 2013 tab in the menu for buttons and banners you can use to show your support of NaGa DeMon, and don’t forget to spread the word! Last year had an amazing response and I hope to see lots of people enjoying themselves again this year.

Cheers,

Nathan

A Brief Check-In

Hi all,

This is just a brief check-in and apology. I promised a newsletter and discussion of the survey for February, but that obviously didn’t happen. Life, illness, and a serious lack of mental fortitude conspired to drag my attention away from this most noble project. I have a lot going on at the moment that requires much of my attention and my few moments of respite have been spent with my family or engaged in mind-numbing distractions to keep me sane!

I will say a HUGE THANK YOU to everyone that contributed to the survey – there was some excellent feedback, and your kind words were much appreciated. NaGa DeMon is a labour of love, and it is good to know the efforts are appreciated.

I am also pleased to see there are a number of you continuing to work on your NaGa DeMon projects, and making great progress. Top work! NaGa DeMon was originally conceived as a way to kick-start people, provide some extrinsic motivation and help them (You!) on the path to completing their work, so it is great to see exactly that happening. I would love to hear from anyone who is still working on their project, either in the comments below, or via email.

Thanks for all your support and patientce. I will have more for you soon.

– Nathan

It’s almost over!

Okay guys, there is only an hour in my part of the world before NaGa DeMon is all over for 2012. I hope you have enjoyed yourself as much as I have over the last month! Before I sign off for a much needed sleep, I thought I might mention a few things you might consider doing:

Sign up for the newsletter / mailing list. I’m not going to bombard you with emails over the next twelve months, but this will be a nifty way of keeping up with the future of NaGa DeMon. Sign-up here.

Take the 2012 Survey. I would love your feedback in order to make next year’s event even better. It will only take a few minutes of your time. Take the survey here.

Validate over at NaNoWriMo. I am a strong advocate that creating a totally awesome game in November qualifies you as a NaNo Rebel, making it a totally legit way of “winning” NaNoWriMo and NaGa DeMon in one fell swoop. So why not “validate” your work over at NaNoWriMo, too. You have to validate by midnight November 30, though. You will need a NaNo account, a “novel” title and synopsis (I named mine the same as my game), and 50,000 words of text to copy and paste into the validator. Here is a dummy text generator that I used.

I will be back with a post-november wrap-up in a few days.

Good luck everyone!

Newsletter

Hi all,
As November quickly draws to a close I am thinking ahead to next year. While I won’t go into that sort of stuff yet, I just wanted to let you know that I have created a newsletter subscription via MailChimp. The intention is to put out a newsletter a few times next year to mostly keep you excited about NaGa DeMon, but also share interesting related information. I imagine the newsletter will not be out more than once a month, but it will be a good way for you to keep connected with this awesome event.

I strongly recommend you subscribe. You can subscribe here.

4 sleeps to go…

Okay, so it’s Sunday in this part of the world so that means NaGa DeMon is only four sleeps away! That seems awfully close, and I don’t feel anywhere near ready yet! I have a kinda-vague idea what I will be working on in November, but I would like to do a little more planning. There is also a lot more I would like to do for the NaGa DeMon “event”, too. At this stage I expect this website to be updated at least a couple of times a week, so it will be worth your while popping by or even subscribing (the RSS feed button is just over there on the right). Some wonderful people have volunteered to answer some questions as part of a feature I will be calling Demon Hunters, and I will also give you a weekly “pep talk” to keep you going (hopefully…). Later in the month I hope that some of you will begin achieving your goals and begin sharing your experiences in a little article series that we will call Demon Slayers! More details on that later.

Today, I want to give a big THANK YOU! to all the people that have gone out into the world and talked about NaGa DeMon. The response to this year’s little event has been nothing short of amazing. AMAZING! My mind is totally blown by the enthusiasm of participants (whether you plan on creating a game or not, I consider you a participant in this amazing ride). So, thanks to all of you for talking about NaGa DeMon, offering advice and feedback, and just getting involved. Everything I have done for this year’s event has been because you have all been so excited about it. At the risk of turning into a cliche, you have totally inspired me this year!

I am really excited about the coming month. I know you are, too. Now, I’m off to prepare!